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My brother-in-law went out of town for a week and left his pregnant dog in our care. Well, she had her puppies in our backyard on Sunday. There are 12 of them. She absolutely will not move so they will be here for a week or more till she is willing to go back to my BIL's.

The first few days she wouldn't leave her puppies except to poop or pee. Suddenly today she is sitting outside the box while they are crying and searching for a nipple. She does go in there every now and then to feed them, but is spending most of her time outside the box.

I've never had a dog and I don't know the first thing about newborn puppies. My BIL is an irresponsible 22 year old and has no idea what he's doing. He comes once a day to check on them. I'm a stay at home mom so I try to check on them frequently, but the dog barely knows me and growls if I get too close to her pups, so I can't do anything or really check the puppies health. My husband is diligent about checking on them but he works a lot. I feel like this all on me and I have no idea what I'm doing.

Anyway, I guess I am wondering if it's normal for a new mom to put some distance between herself and the puppies? Any help is greatly appreciated!
 

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First, I'm no expert with regards to dogs, especial new moms.

Secondly, unless this dog is super duper comfortable with out I would keep my distance from the pups. Supposedly dogs get very peculiar and somewhat defensive about their pups with everyone except "their person".

Thirdly, maybe her nutritional requirements have changed now that she's nursing. I have no idea what they may have changed to.
 

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She needs a significant amount of food if she is feeding all 12 pups. There is a calculation but I can't do it on my phone, but you could probably triple her amount. She also needs to be on a seriously good food for that amount of puppies. It's a shame you can't get close to her but if she seems to be doing her own thing then you will just have to let her.
 

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With our dogs, we increase their food amounts gradually over the pregnancy and when they have the pups we give the bitch 2 meals a day instead of one big one. This allows the food to be processed more evenly over the day.

Bitches generally will stay with a litter for the first day or two. Thereafter she will usually get back into the whelping box to clean up pees and poops and feed them, but will not sleep with them.

May I make a suggestion here - When the pups are ready to be sent to their new homes, ensure that they are sold for enough to cover the cost of spaying the bitch and insist your BL has the job done.
 

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I also agree with increasing food. She may be going in there to feed the pups you just never see it. When my grandpa bred beagles he had the problem and set up a web cam and realized she went in to feed them but he never saw it. He also wondered how they were so fat but she never saw her feed them. Also we had an oops litter 2 years ago(mom wouldn't spay female). She would not let anyone but me and my mom by them. My brother and sister couldn't even go by them.
 

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Yes its normal. I switch mom to puppy food, and offer three meals a day. Also at around three weeks of age, I offer the pups puppy food, soaked with water until soft, but not with standing water in the bowl. Be sure mom is up to date on vaccinations. If its possible to leash mom, let someone hold her to check the puppies.poo for cleft palletes, umbilical hernias, any deformities, and dew claws if you plan to have them removed, this needs to be done now.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks everyone for your insight. The puppies are still doing well, so I must not see her feeding them. The mom is eating and drinking a ton, which is great.

And believe me, BIL will get an earful about spaying the mom.
 

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Hi Katiekitty. All I can suggest and this might be obvious, but make sure the area isn't to hot, i.e. well shaded if it's hot there and that she has plenty of water/food etc. I dont know if dogs eat the afterbirth or not and since you can't get close enough to check, there isn't much you can do about it anyway. Im just thinking she might not have room or doesn't like the hygeine conditions, but again you can't get close enough to look.As long as they aren't everheated and have the necessities, she'll probably take care of things herself.Sorry I can't be more helpful. Maybe call a vet and see if they'll give you some info?Good luck. Millwrong
 
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